1. Former Maldives President Nasheed jailed for 13 years
i. Former Maldivian President Mohamed Nasheed was convicted and sentenced to 13 years in prison after a quick and disputed trial for allegedly ordering a senior judge arrested while in office.
ii. Nasheed has denied ordering the arrest. His supporters said the charges are aimed at eliminating him as a challenger against incumbent President Yameen Abdul Gayoom in the 2018 presidential election.
iii. Nasheed was the country’s first democratically elected President.
2. Harvard University retains top position in Times’ World Reputation Rankings 2015
i. Harvard University of United States (US) has again topped in World Reputation Rankings 2015 published by Times Higher Education.
Times Higher Education in the rankings revealed the top 100 universities across the world.
iii. The top ten universities are all located in the US and United Kingdom (UK). US alone has 8 universities in the top ten rankings. While, UK has 2 universities in the top 10 ranking.
iv. 2015 reputation rankings shows that US alone has 43 higher education institutions in the top 100. While, United has 12 universities in the top 100.
Top 3 Universities in World Reputation Rankings 2015 are:
- Harvard University (US).
- University of Cambridge (UK).
- University of Oxford (UK).
3. India’s GDP growth will be 7.5 percent this year
i. Finance minister Arun Jaitley has said that this year the GDP growth rate will be 7.5 percent.
ii. Arun Jaitley was in London for Launching the Union Bank of India (UK), a subsidiary of the Union Bank of India.
4. Government cuts import tariff on gold and silver
i. The government has slashed import tariff value on gold to $375 per 10 grams and silver to $512 per kg following weak global price trends.
ii. The tariff value on imported gold was fixed at $393 per 10 grams and on silver at $549 per kg.
Gold is the second-largest import item for India after petroleum. Higher gold import bill adversely affects the country’s current account deficit (CAD).
iv. The government has been repeatedly asking people to desist from buying gold and instead invest in other saving instruments.
5. NASA launches 4 spacecraft to solve magnetic mystery
NASA has launched four identical spacecraft on a billion-dollar mission to study the explosive give-and-take of the Earth and sun’s magnetic fields.
ii. The unmanned Atlas rocket, and NASA’s Magnetospheric Multiscale spacecraft, took flight right on time. Within two hours, all four observatories were flying free.
Each observatory resembles a giant octagonal wheel, stretching more than 11 feet (3.35 meters) across and 4 feet (1.22 meters) high, and weighing 3,000 pounds (1,360.79 kilogrammes) apiece.
6. Pakistan tests 1st indigenous armed drone Burraq and laser guided missile Barq
i. Pakistan successfully tested its first indigenously built all-weather armed drone named Burraq and a laser guided missile named Barq.
ii. By successfully testing of Burraq, Pakistan became the 9th country in the World to develop an unmanned combat aerial vehicle (UCAV) domestically.
iii. It is developed by a venture of the Pakistan Air Force (PAF) and the National Engineering and Scientific Commission (NESCOM).
iv. With Barq laser-guided missile mounted on it can hit moving targets as well as stationary targets with pinpoint accuracy.